I Award You No Points

I probably think I’m smarter than I am.

LinkedIn Sucks

Posted at — May 1, 2020

Capitalism isn’t controlled by Smith’s invisible hand of the market. Capitalism is controlled by a headless ravenous beast. This beast is insatiable and will stop at nothing to get its fill. But, what does this have to do with Linkedin?

LinkedIn is a prime example of the Stockholm Syndrome that has gripped all workers during this late-stage capitalism period we’re in. LinkedIn causes the people you know to become extreme sycophants, sucking up to their corporate overlords out of a fear that they may become unemployable - a death sentence in a laissez-faire world. They all become part of the beast, and do it’s bidding with little thought.

I have this friend of sorts that I used to work with many years ago, and we’re connected on LinkedIn. I’m assuming that means, in general, that we can share insights about professional life with one another, and maybe even help each other get a leg-up in the field - job referrals, endorsements, and the like. But, it’s actually more than that, and this is where it gets a bit insidious. Essentially, the job-hunting process, always a process with a built-in power imbalance that strongly favors the employers, has now become commodified even further. There is a social currency in addition to the paid ads and sponsored posts made to make even the most evil and fuckfaced of companies seem like great places to work. There has always been a social aspect to employment, i.e., “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know!" However, Linkedin now makes this much more public and immediate. As such, it exacerbates the perfidy of those who feel forced to toe the company line to continue to pay the bills.

This friend, we’ll call him Alan, has always struck me as reasonably intelligent, and was at least somewhat cognizant and aware of the world around him. Therefore I am a bit taken aback at the apparent lack of awareness here of just how low the general public’s opinion of Amazon is (or perhaps, should be). Why would this otherwise intelligent and informed individual post such a transparent ass-kissing update on LinkedIn, gushing about the disgusting amount of money they’re making while our oceans boil, our forests burn, and our people starve? Not a good look.

And now, the point.

Well, it’s probably mostly due to his continued survival being reliant upon the largesse of a creepy bald mega-billionaire with a notoriously thin skin. That’s not a good place to be, in my opinion. And, LinkedIn is a fucked-up ecosystem that encourages this behavior.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen a post, similar to this one, that I wanted to leave a searing, socialist rant-filled comment on. But I don’t, because possible future employers and my existing employer may see it and decide I am not employable (not a team player, toxic, other words used to describe employees that stand up for themselves, etc.). This would leave me to essentially starve to death in a country that has next to no social safety net. I am a slave to our capitalist system, where individuality, rather then being embraced, is stifled and strangled out of fealty to the headless beast. Anything that reduces (or fails to contribute to) profits is to be destroyed, at all costs. But, there’s not just two choices here: blatant ass-kissing or rabble-rousing. There is a third choice, and it’s the one I choose.

I just say nothing. I think Alan should probably make that choice, too.

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